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History shows us the same grim phenomenon over and over: under extreme circumstances, apparently ordinary citizens turn into merciless torturers and systematic executioners of defenseless victims. War crimes and genocides may be orchestrated by dictators and terrorist leaders,but they are carried out by individuals who otherwise show empathy, sound moral judgment, and aversion to violence. How does this happen?
Today, the “wretched of the earth” are no longer those oppressed by colonization, but rather the unemployed and the working poor, migrants and refugees, landless peasants depending on public or familial assistance to survive—in a word, the economically useless.
The Revival of Democracy in America and the Better Angels of Your Nature Letter from a European Friend
A worthy heir to Alexis de Tocqueville’s landmark nineteenth-century analysis of the democratic experiment in the United States, Renaud Lassus’s The Revival of Democracy in America is both a brisk, lucid assessment of the nation’s current political and social climate and a resounding call for optimism at a moment when the prevailing winds seem to be blowing the other way.
“A system is viable only if it combines speed and slowness,” write Philippe Cury and Daniel Pauly. “Nature’s cycles tell us that viability requires a combination of these dynamics—fast and slow, innovation and inertia.” Obstinate Nature, a concise and powerful collaboration between two accomplished marine biologists, is centrally concerned with the imbalance in those dynamics that currently threatens our planet, our environment, and our survival.
This richly illustrated volume furnishes an exceptional opportunity for scientists and students to follow the course of a major advance in our understanding of the molecular basis of brain functions.